Police at the northwestern town of Khorixas will regularly patrol shebeens and pubs to put an end to school-going children who frequent bars.
Addressing shebeen owners at the old magistrate’s court building at Khorixas, police station commander, Chief Inspector Hiskia Nuuyoma said the increasing number of students that frequent shebeens and bars has gotten out of control.
He called on shebeen owners to keep in check pupils who visited such places and report them to the law enforcement agents.
Shebeen owners, Warrant Officer Simson Shindeke, who deals with liquor licencing as well some school principals attended the meeting.
Nuuyoma said parents; school authorities and the police would take concrete measures to crackdown on the increasing frequent visits by pupils to shebeens.
“Go to the other regions and you will not find pupils drinking at shebeens like this. Police will not allow underage drinking whether you are above 18-years. As long as you are a student police will crackdown as we don’t want young ones to be exposed to such harsh environment that can jeopardize their learning,” warned the chief inspector.
Parents were tongue-lashed for doing little when it came to controlling their children as they leave the houses late in the night but they open doors when their school going children come back early in the morning according to the police chief inspector.
Some shebeen owners complained about pupils who refuse to leave when they are told to do so.
Salinde !Hakhoas, the owner of Club India said some pupils send older out-of-school youth to go and buy alcohol for them.
!Hakhoas said he refuses entrance to pupils and he warned adults who buy alcohol for school children.
“Pupils are conniving with adults to get alcohol. We the bar owners are trying our best to stop this,” said !Hakhoas who pleaded for more police patrols. Club India is situated next to Welwitchia Junior Secondary School and at times pupils visit there, especially during end of the month.
“Police will be out on patrol and has instructed them (bar owners) to call me. Sometimes they call the charge offices but are told there are no police vehicles so I gave them my personal number,” Nuuyoma told New Era.
Police called upon shebeen owners to take appropriate action and alert the police should pupils come to their drinking establishments.
At the meeting an agreement was also made between the police and the shebeen owners that on Sundays or any other Christian holidays drinking establishments will be open after 12h00 and close on time as stipulated by their licence.
Previously drinking establishments opened at 09h00 and closed at 15h00 before been re-opened at 18h00 until late at Khorixas and surrounding areas. Some church leaders have an agreement with bar owners especially those nearby churches to open their bars once the religious services are done.
“On Sundays and other religious holidays bars will be open later than the usual as bar owners in south of Kunene region agreed on a new time,” said Nuuyoma.
Hotel Sunrise owner Elfie Essau was singled out and praised for chasing out pupils at his drinking establishment.
Essau is known for whipping schoolgoing children, who go to Hotel Sunrise. On Friday New Era saw a group of pupils from Cornelius Goreseb High School going back to the hostel in the late hours.